Botanizing Walks & Hikes

Christmas fern, GGardner

Walks Update

Our highest priority is the health of our members, volunteers and those who attend our events.  Thus, we have suspended our planned programs and events, including our walks. 

• Our Walks & Workshops Committee is looking to channel encounters, observations and comments related to native plants to the RIWPS blog.  RIWPS members are encouraged to submit short pieces. All blog details.

• The Walks & Workshop Committee is looking for one or more volunteers with videography skills. We have fledging ideas for online programs /experiences but videography is not in our skill set. Contact office@riwps.org 

• Interested in seeing great labeled images of  some of the plants taking most recently in a variety of locations?See Walk Leader Doug McGrady’s  flickr account.  You do not need to belong to flickr to view these images 


Being in nature can be both physically and mentally restorative.  We hope you will find yourself in the outdoors, and on the trails.  Check out our self guided walks. or  Partner Page for links to organizations with conservation lands.  Some however are not open at this time.

Let’s go for a walk …

Walk with a group of people interested in learning and sharing their botanical knowledge of native plants and their habitats.

• For the 2020 season we are offering  three different botanizing walk series. Two are open to the public and one is for RIWPS Members only as it is a benefit of membership.

• Specific details of each walk in all three series are posted about four to six weeks in advance.

• Walks are offered at no charge. A donation of $5.00 to $10.00 to support our programs would be appreciated.  Donate here.

There is no registration. Just come and enjoy as many of these experiences as you can!

We walk in the rain and snow. Should there be a rare weather cancellation, we will post this info on the page of the specific walk and will try to notify you if you are on the mailing list for that walk series.

(See article and images about the October 2018 First Thursday Walk)

Dundery Brook Trail, Little Compton RI

Boardwalk at Dundery Brook Trail, Little Compton, RI

Walk participants will be asked to sign a waiver at the beginning of each walk. To review this document go to RIWPS waiver

Sturdy footwear, clothing appropriate for the weather and for protection against sun exposure, ticks and other insects as well as a sufficient supply of water and nourishment are a must for waking in nature!

Please note: In State Management areas, during hunting season (the second Saturday in September to the last day of February and the third Saturday in April to the last day in May) hikers are required to wear 200 square inches of solid daylight fluorescent orange. Typically a hat is 200 square inches.  

Sign up for any of the walks series that are of interest to you so that in case of cancellation or changes in the walk we can notify you by e-mail (as well as post this information on the walk itself).  You may also choose to be on our general mailing list.

First Thursday Botanizing

• Eight walks, April through November

• On the first Thursday of each month a different expert guides participants in identifying plants.  Consideration is given to issues related to the plant communities at the site, especially those of particular interest to the guide and participants.

• Beginners to experts welcome.

• Walks are two hours, usually on easy to moderate terrain.

Plants & Their Places

• Three walks, May to August

• Doug McGrady, devotee of exploring the wilds of New England, seeking and documenting populations of rare plants, guides participants in identifying a wide the variety of plants at the site, with a particular focus on the rare and unusual.

• Some prior knowledge of plants is very helpful.

• Walks are typically four hours, usually on moderate terrain.  Forays during the walk searching for specific plants tend to be on more difficult terrain.

Botanizers Afield: For RIWPS members only

• Three walks (and maybe more!), June to September. This year we will go to Big River Management Area in West Greenwich, Blackstone Gorge in Blackstone, Ma and either Ell or Long Pond in Hopkinton.

• RIWPS members are invited to “meet up” with us at a few selected places to just enjoy a ramble with each other.

• There is no designated leader, rather the focus is on the camaraderie that comes from just sharing our observations.

• Walks are typically two hours.

• Bring your hand lens and field guide, maybe a notebook for jotting down questions or a sketch or two.

See our All Programs Page for a listing of all our programs including our botanizing walks.